The Four Letter Word that Could Change Your Life by Linda Kaplan Thaler

Sadly, we live in a world that equates uber success with the “it” factor – having Mensa sized intelligence, virtuoso talent, or incredible wealth. But, in fact, research has shown that only 2% of born prodigies ever amount to anything in life. Yet 98% of the world’s most successful people possess, not the “it” factor, but the “grit” factor – guts, resilience, initiative and tenacity. Case in point, Colin Powell was a C- student all through college, Michael Jordan couldn’t make his high school varsity basketball team, and Steven Spielberg was rejected from film school – twice! What propelled them to extraordinary success was a winning combo of determination and perseverance to achieve their goals, no matter how lofty, no matter how far reaching. And the best thing about possessing the “grit” factor, we have found, is that anyone can develop it, whether you’re eight or eighty eight

98% of the world’s most successful people possess, not the “it” factor, but the “grit” factor.

Grit to Great

Grit is humanity’s great equalizer, and it’s the reason Robin and I wrote our newest book, “Grit to Great,” which will debut this September. The book is filled with groundbreaking research, empowering insights, and deeply emotional stories of people who have made it, despite all odds, as well as helpful tips and exercises to improve your grit quotient. And if you’re not sure just how much grit you have, we invite everyone to take our grit quiz at

Trust us, Robin Koval and I, although proud past Matrix winners, are neither geniuses nor prodigies. We are two ladies, born and bred in the Bronx, with public school educations, lacking in wealth, fame, or Ivy League diplomas. Yet, somehow, through sheer perseverance, pluck and passion, we managed to take a fledging start-up company, and turn it into one of America’s fastest growing ad agencies, the kaplan thaler group. We took Michael Bloomberg’s advice when he said, “I’m not the smartest guy, but I can outwork you. It’s the one thing I can control.” And that’s what we did, we outworked virtually all our competitors, going from one account in a small third floor walk-up office, to an agency (Publicis Kaplan Thaler) with over 800 employees worth billions of dollars in billings. And in answer to your question, yes, we did move from the third floor walk-up- four times in fact!

We are passionate about sharing the message in “Grit to Great” and are happily spreading the news, at corporative events, in high schools, colleges, and start-up companies around the country, that success is attainable, to everyone. And early reviews of “Grit to Great,” from everyone from James Patterson, whose meteoric climb to fame is featured in the book, to Arianna Huffington, the very personification of a gritty lady, have been incredibly positive.

If you’d like to take the steps to go from grit to great, please pre-order a copy (amazon, ibooks, BN) and find out just how far you can go!

About the Author

Linda Kaplan Thaler

Linda Kaplan ThalerLinda Kaplan Thaler is Chairman of Publicis NY, the flagship agency of Publicis Worldwide Network, whose blue-chip client roster includes: P&G, Citi, Nestle, L’Oreal, Merck, Pfizer, Tri-Honda and Wendy’s, among many others. Previously, Thaler was CEO and Chief Creative Officer of the Kaplan Thaler Group, which she founded in 1997 and grew from a fledgling start-up to a company with over a billion dollars in billings. In July of 2012, the Kaplan Thaler Group merged with Publicis New York to form Publicis Kaplan Thaler. [Read more...]